Words Mean Nothing — Actions are Everything
I grew up with people who talked a lot. In fact, many of them, are still somewhere Talking. Talking about what they’re going to do, what they once did or what they would have done. I’ve listened to them tell stories — ones I was there for — and exaggerate the facts beyond belief. The thirty people who were there, become sixty. The thousand dollars they made, becomes five and so on and so forth. People lie to themselves and others everyday.
So I have very little interest in listening to you tell me about what it is you’re going to do. I don’t care about your grand plans. Mainly because, the chances of you following through are slim to none. Talk isn’t cheap, it’s free. I’m skeptical about people who talk about themselves too much. When others feel the need to tell me how successful they’re going to be or are, all I think is who are they trying to convince, me or themselves?
There is a great line from rapper Nas, that I’ve appreciated from the very first time I heard it as a teen, where he says “Those who know don’t talk and those who talk don’t know a thing”. In school, the kid who felt the need to tell everyone how tough he was, was always the one who ended up losing the fight he started with the quiet kid who never bothered anyone. This is precisely what Nas was eluding to. And it’s a sentiment I certainly second.
I’ve seen a lot of talkers, do little else. While they were talking, the doers were off quietly doing. Grinding, while their talkative counterpart was off gabbing like a chatty Cathy. One was putting in the work while the other was Telling the world how wonderful they were. I’ll give you one guess as to who ends up more successful when it’s all said and done.
We live in a world that begs you to broadcast your every thought and achievement. I’m convinced half the people I know who go to the gym, only do so for the Social Media check in and selfie. Our obsession with telling everyone we know, what we’re doing at every moment of the day has become unhealthy. The status updates, the check ins, the pictures, videos and snaps. It’s all caused us how to forget how to genuinely socialize and actually live.
You can have a dream or a goal, without updating the world every step of the way. You can work on bettering yourself, without telling a soul your doing so. A lack of talking about it, doesn’t somehow impede your progress. Learn to focus on what it is you’re actually trying to achieve as opposed to telling so many people about it or sharing it on social media. The amount of progress you end up making is exponential, when all your energy is going into the things that actually matter.
Don’t Tell Them, Show Them was originally published in The Ascent on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.